In Q3, 2021, a total of 331.2 million smartphones were shipped, out of which Apple’s iPhones consisted of 50.4 million units. While this figure does not appear impressive, what is impressive is the fact that the Cupertino firm recorded a 20.8 percent year-over-year increase in those shipments, which also happens to be the highest for any smartphone vendor in history.
Apple Would Likely Have Sold More Units if It Was Not for the Supply Shortages
Overall, the global smartphone shipments total saw a 6.7 percent drop compared to the same quarter last year, with Samsung, Xiaomi, and others seeing fewer units sold in Q3, 2021. This downward trajectory also translates into a lower global market share for some Android phone vendors. Apple, on the other hand, saw its global market share rise to 15.2 percent, up from 11.7 percent from the same quarter last year. This data suggests that the iPhone 13 is in high demand, a fact that was pointed out by Apple CEO Tim Cook during the company’s latest earnings call.
Unfortunately, Cook also states that supply shortages have affected iPhone 13 wait times, with Apple losing out on an estimated $6 billion in revenue due to this setback. Nabila Popal, research director with IDC’s Mobility and Consumer Device Trackers said that the smartphone market, which earlier showed signs of being resilient to the chip shortage, is showing the aftermath of supply constraints.
“In all honestly, it was never fully immune to the shortages, but until recently the shortages were not severe enough to cause a decline in shipments and was simply limiting the rate of growth. The issues have now compounded, and shortages are affecting all vendors alike. On top of component shortages, the industry has also been hit with other manufacturing and logistical challenges. Stricter testing and quarantining policies are delaying transportation and power supply constraints in China are restricting manufacturing of key components. Despite all efforts to mitigate the impact, all major vendors' production targets for the fourth quarter have been adjusted downwards. With continued strong demand, we don't anticipate the supply-side issues to ease until well into next year.”
It does not look like supply shortages are expected to improve anytime soon, and with TSMC already reported to have charged Apple extra to use its 5nm chips, we might see the actual repercussions materialize in the coming months, so stay tuned.
News Source: IDC